March 11, 1998 in Nation/World

Bomb Explodes On Train Arriving At Station

Associated Press

The third bomb in two days to explode in a crowded public place tore through a train Tuesday as it pulled into the Lahore station. Ten people died and more than 80 were injured.

Body parts lay strewn across the station, making it difficult to identify the dead, ambulance driver Mohammed Hussain said. Witnesses said police used hacksaws to pry loose trapped, weeping passengers.

“Smoke was pouring out of the carriages, and many of the bodies were burned beyond recognition or ripped apart,” Hussain said.

Paramilitary troops fanned out across Lahore, capital of the eastern Punjab province, to guard mosques and government buildings against further attacks, city Police Chief Ahmed Satar said.

As in previous bombings, the government blamed all three blasts on agents from neighboring India. The Indian government has denied past such claims.

Authorities believe a timed explosive was planted on the early morning train that was packed with laborers from Kasur, 50 miles south, near Pakistan’s border with India.

“There was blood everywhere, and people were screaming and weeping,” passenger Liaquat Ali said.

On Monday, a bomb ripped through a train near the Punjab town of Pattoki, 35 miles south of Lahore, killing 11 people. Hours earlier, a bomb exploded outside a courthouse in Sukkur, 360 miles south in Sindh province, killing two. More than 50 were injured in the two bombings.

A Foreign Ministry statement said the three blasts “were part of a well-orchestrated terrorist plan” carried out by Indian intelligence, the state-run news agency reported.

© Copyright 1998 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

Thoughts and opinions on this story? Click here to comment >>

Get stories like this in a free daily email